Tight auto market in Mid-Michigan means great deals to sell or trade


FLUSHING, Mich. (WJRT) – Car dealerships are much more empty than they used to be, which could be a boon for anyone selling or trading in a used car.

At LaFontaine Ford in Flushing, stocks are certainly low, but they are still quite a bargain. Normally the new batch of cars has around 220 sets of wheels, but there are currently less than 60 vehicles in stock – and that’s a lot compared to other dealers.

“The most important thing is probably the trucks. The F-150s are hot products and we have 15 more, and there are vehicles being shipped, one at a time, ”said Dave Manges, director of new car sales. “We’re sort of in a situation where we have these vehicles available. Then we also have vehicles in production that are waiting for computer chips. “

Despite low stocks, he was in the middle of five trades at one point on Friday. So LaFontaine is doing business, but people get hold of the vehicles before they even get on the land.

Dealers are equally eager to strike a deal with anyone who owns a car, whether leased or purchased, and who wants a new car.

“We’re moving to a kind of vehicle ordering strategy for people with upcoming leases,” Manges said. “Because the value of used cars is so high, customers can actually buy back their leases and hold onto them for the next few months while we order those vehicles. Probably succeed in trading them because the values ​​are rising due to the shortage. “

Used car prices are up 6.6% year-to-date, car search engine says Iseecars.com. This brings the average price of a ride from $ 22,522 to $ 24,009.

For some, it’s just enough to trade and get something new. This exact scenario just happened at LaFontaine with a customer who wanted to trade in her car in January.

“The vehicle was worth – it was like a 3-year-old Ford Fusion – it was worth over $ 2,500 more now, months later. It made someone very happy to sell them a new car, ”Manges said.

The higher prices are likely to stick around a bit longer. Manges said the market is currently based on microchips, as some Detroit Three auto plants remain closed due to a shortage.

He said it could easily be a year before stocks return to normal.

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